Thursday, June 19, 2008

I've joined the Flock

Testing.....and hoping Flock
will make posting easier.

....and all the time wishing I was in Alaska

Blogged with the Flock Browser

Monday, June 16, 2008

Spinning and Dyeing Marathon.

I'm playing a bit of catch up on a few of my fanatical fiber pursuits.

This year has been...
Interesting and mostly enjoyable year so far, so much so that blogging is way down on my list of things to do. But since I'm horrible at keeping notes I've found that my lack of posts leaves me wondering what I've been memory only retains earth-shattering moments and fortunately there have been very few of those. Becoming more of a recluse due directly to the price of gas, only extremes in events get me to drive out of what could be described as the "the lost territory" of S. Putnam Co. in FL I am 25 miles from anyplace considered civilized. So the last few months I've been spinning and knitting and thoroughly enjoying every minute.

Here is the run down of some of my activities that I actually took photo's of...

You might think I've been "blue" but it has only been my hands and nails....rubber gloves can and do leak.

I can't wait to play with this 1/2 lb of tussah silk.

Or the 1lb of yummy oh-so-soft mystery roving.

Indigo dyeing
1/2lb of Borgs yarn dyed to look like faded blue jeans. One day this will be socks.
The dark blob is also Borgs that was a horrible dark red now it's a horrible dark blue/red. (sometimes over-dyeing doesn't work).
To the far right is some more home spun over dyed (painted) that was previously painted yarn that was way too insipid for my liking, now I love it.
At the very bottom is a little shiny mohair and another oddment.

This was a fun knit (commission) it's the Peruvian Doll bag (free pattern from Berroco). I shown it at the Spring Frolic at Barberville Fl.
Of course it had "not for sale" on it as did my friend Cindy who kept an eye on things and me while I took quick breaks to see what else was happening.
Lot's of music, crafts and sunshine to name a few.

Then came this current spinning frenzy......

Fawn Fleece washed and ready for carding....unknown breed. I enjoy bringing lost and sad fleece back to life.

Same fleece as above. now carded and "hackled" (is that how best one describes fiber after it has been drug through the "hackle"? Personally "nailed" would be a better word). I still have the wounds. Have no plans as yet for it.

The following is wool from a mix of Florida (unknown breed but very nice) and blended with fiber found in the Christmas sack (see last post) that I'm calling Shetland, although no expert, that is how it looked and behaved.

A total of 5 + lbs carded, Spun "loose bulky" using my Lendrum.
Took the pic's before I finished up just to show how nicely it carded. It knits up a bit too tightly at 4 sts to 1 inch on size 10 US. Since I intend to knit bags that will be slightly felted I'll be using a larger size needle. I was thrilled to see how nicely it

 was carried
away spending all day with the dye pot.

I left some of the yarn in large hanks and one natural, the rest was split into hanks varying from 10 to 20 yds so that I could dye a variety of colors. I love to knit Intarsia and mixed a palette that pleased my eye. It took all day doing one batch at a time on the stove using acid dyes, many of them ancient. I got some nice earthy tones, perfect for the native designs I love. Didn't quite get the turqu
oise as bright as I'd hoped but may over dye it at another time.

Well, that's all for now folks.

Boycott the pumps, stay home and play.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Santa or a Goblin?.

Three days ago these landed at my feet.

It's still way to warm for Santa to turn up in FL so these must have come from a Goblin. Either way they screamed to come home with me.....and you know how I hate to say NO.

I really thought I'd gotten more smelly fleece. (In the past year I've been knee deep in very dirty, very smelly Florida fleece) but the odds were finally in my favor and just had to get back to blogging to share this with you.....

So in sack #1

Roving and more roving.

This bag weighed about 2# and every tiny fiber is lovely. I'm not 100% sure that this really is all wool....the white had to be fondled first and is finer than anything I've ever had my hands on and ditto for the little bags of brown. The dark gray at the top though is even finer with a very short staple length...dare I think Cashmere? The dark brown is perhaps a little courser than the white, as it the light gray.
I must compare it with my NZ Merino and grade it accordingly. But first I think I'll sleep on/in it
: )

And now for sack #2

Thankfully this included a scrap of paper saying Shetland.
This is also deliciously soft. In the center you'll see some roving all ready to go...yippee.

If all the above wasn't enough to get my imagination in high gear....then see what I got two days ago. All for $8 at a thrift store....don't even ask which one as "mum's the word"!

Baby Camel from Italy (colors are softer than shown on my monitor)

(3,393 yds) 21 ounces of pure baby camel lace weight...comes in 20 gram balls and in about half a dozen soft earthy but pretty colors that match wonderfully (made in Italy).

And I also got about the same weight of pure wool from Sweden, natural shade too but darker and a bit thicker (I'd call it sock weight) and there is 2,088's not very soft though.....but good for outerwear

ALL for $8

Friday, February 02, 2007

Back for a blast....

Vogue Knitting Fall '06,

Is where you can find this gorgeous and very intriguing sock "Pattern #8 Two Colored Arch-Shaped Socks" . So very intriguing that I had to join the world of sock knitters and give it a try. For two days I blamed myself for mis-aligning "everything". Then I used my head and checked online for errata....sure enough there it was, along with 8 other patterns from the same issue of Vogue that had "problems" (words like errata and problems were not the ones I was using at the time). So back to the needles and fresh balls of alpaca, I'd worn the others to shreds from frogging. Well, guessssssss what? That newly edited pattern was still off in more directions than those socks were while flying around the living room.
After all this knitting and extreme familiarity with this pattern I've now been able to write the part past turning the heel and into the arch. Heaven only knows if I'll make it to the toe.....more convinced than ever that I'm completely cursed when it comes to socks.
Question....with all this rewriting can I now claim all future rights to the pattern I've written.....just kidding but I sure resent Meg Swansen receiving all the bowing and curtseying that is bestowed on her.
Message for Meg. "If you can't take the time to test your own patterns then please send them to me or someone who'll do the job properly".
Message for Vogue. "If you can't use designers who produce quality along with their flair, then use some unknown designers with integrity". I might suggest you consider printing a disclaimer that injuries caused from stabbing oneself with the needles in frustration cannot be used against the publisher in a court of law.

If I manage to make both socks....a huge achievement for me, I will publish the photo's along with my revisions to the pattern.

Last word of my newly found wisdom. Check online for errata before purchasing the next magazine. It just might save your sanity.